E-Scribe : a programmer’s blog

About Me

PBX I'm Paul Bissex. I build web applications using open source software, especially Django. Started my career doing graphic design for newspapers and magazines in the '90s. Then wrote tech commentary and reviews for Wired, Salon, Chicago Tribune, and others you never heard of. Then I built operations software at a photography school. Then I helped big media serve 40 million pages a day. Then I worked on a translation services API doing millions of dollars of business. Now I'm building the core platform of a global startup accelerator. Feel free to email me.


I co-wrote "Python Web Development with Django". It was the first book to cover the long-awaited Django 1.0. Published by Addison-Wesley and still in print!


Built using Django, served with gunicorn and nginx. The database is SQLite. Hosted on a FreeBSD VPS at Johncompanies.com. Comment-spam protection by Akismet.


Pile o'Tags

Stuff I Use

Bitbucket, Debian Linux, Django, Emacs, FreeBSD, Git, jQuery, LaunchBar, macOS, Markdown, Mercurial, Python, S3, SQLite, Sublime Text, xmonad

Spam Report

At least 237138 pieces of comment spam killed since 2008, mostly via Akismet.

Make your own blog with Django in only 2.5 years

I launched this blog in July of 2005. It was powered by a homebrew PHP5 creation that as of today has, finally, thankfully, been laid to rest.

The other thing that started absorbing my attention in July 2005 was Django. Every month since then, I've thought, "You know, I should make some time this weekend to port my blog over to Django." I was using it for everything else, after all, side projects as well as web applications at work. The word "port" was the mistake there -- if I had said, "I should make some time this weekend to destroy my old blog and make a clean-slate Django version", I probably would have gotten it done about two years ago!

Anyway, it's live, and it feels good. Visible improvements are few; I used my random image template tag for the header graphics, and I am very happy to have bonafide RSS 2.01 and Atom feeds instead of the shaky homebrew RSS 0.91 of the old setup. There are many features I haven't finalized yet, such as tags and commenting. And there is more stuff I have planned, such as OpenID support. Going live now gives me motivation for getting the rest deployed.

Today ends a long blogging-drought for me as well. I've been busy, and in the coming weeks I'll be sharing more about the large and small projects that have been occupying me.

(Before anyone asks, I don't have plans to release the source. You really don't want it. If it evolves into something decent, I'll reconsider. But thankfully, today there are several Django blog packages to choose from, as well as good components you can use for building your own, and all of that stuff has the distinct advantage of not being based on something I cobbled together in 2005!)

Sunday, January 6th, 2008

0 comments pending approval
Comment from Andreas , 1 week later

Congratulations to your django blog!

First: Happy New Year! (a bit late, but commenting wasn't available ;-)

You achieved the goal which I'm still looking forward. But first I hope I get the time to dig deeper in Python/django

Can you recommend python book(s)/resource(s) for a programmer with following experiences?:

C (advanced) C++ (avarage) Java (minor)

Cheers Andreas

Comment from Paul , 1 week later

Hi Andreas, thanks for the nice note.

We have a section in the FAQ for the Django IRC channel that has some relevant links: http://code.djangoproject.com/wiki/IrcFAQ#LearnPython2

As far as printed matter goes, a good comprehensive Python introduction for experienced programmers like yourself is Core Python. I also enjoy flipping through O'Reilly's Python Cookbook.

Comment from Andreas , 1 week later

Thanks for your infos!

I'm curious where I will be after 2,5 years ;-)

Cheers Andreas

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